School vision in a nutshell: Claytonisms
Clayton Carson is Principal of a Primary school on the East coast of Australia, and a living legend of most Microsoft Partners in Learning events (Australian PiL ; the US site ; the UK site). He's one of these people who is at once totally down to earth in the way that he runs his school and talks about learning, and inspirational to the point of bringing your aspirations up to stratospheric levels.
Way back in January, at an education research event supported by the PiL programme, he outlined 10 "Claytonisms", rules by which he and his school live in order to sustain engaging learning with the students:
- Mutual trust, between leadership and teachers, teachers and students, parents and the community.
- Deal with data, not emotion, to improve learning.
- Operate with a clear vision, one that everyone knows
- View the parents and community as your employers, listen to them, work with them, respond to their concerns in your actions.
- Admit that perception is reality - what they say is the way it is.
- Develop two great, ambitious projects every year - students don't want lots of small projects that last days; they want beefy projects to get their teeth (and their brains) into.
- It has only happened if people know about it (my personal fave). If a tree falls and no-one sees it, did it really happen? That's probably the wrong question. If a tree falls and no-one sees it, does anyone care? Absolutely not. You need to share great learning out to the world. If you and your students aren't proud enough to share it then it probably wasn't worth learning.
- Every teacher is a leader - empower them to be one, (and support those who are not harnessing that opportunity).
- Do it well.
- Just do it. (similar to John Hunter's "Don't Think Too Hard. Just Try The Experiment".)